It is ironic that as we tentatively gathered in the bright, September sun to press the flesh and introduce ourselves to each other in a neighbourly fashion, sharing our hopes for a progressive sense of community, togetherness and finding out who brought beer; that we were blissfully ignorant of the armed robbery at one of the flats in Salamander Court some five hours earlier.

It wasn’t until I randomly checked the BBC wesite the next day that I tripped over the fact. There was no further online word until Tuesday, by which time the Scotsman had caught up. Thankfully, there were no serious injuries and a description of the offenders was given to the local police.

The BBQ itself went rather well; numerous residents dropped by for a chat, a drink and a burger. If fact, it was still going strong after four hours and the light was fading. There are plans to try and mobilise the area again for a small event in November and no doubt, there will be discussions about local security and vigilence.

Personally, I would like to thank Rob, Ilona, Erin and Alvin for being the stalwarts of the party and welcoming all subsequent attendees. Let’s hope the area sees more of the congenial interaction and less of the opportunistic thuggery…